Chapter 1. Introduction and management summary 5
There are other requirements that could be listed, but many of them can be
summarized as follows:
򐂰 Provide a current view of a cross function business process whose data
stored in several local and remote disparate data sources.
As with any business process, data warehousing and business intelligence
should be viewed as a journey, not a destination. All business processes cannot
be evolved to realtime at once. Let the business functional areas determine
where the greatest need and greatest benefit lies. Start there, and begin to
evolve and grow. You data warehouse and BI architecture should be constantly
re-evaluated, just as you do with your business processes, to verify that you are
providing the required level of services for your users.
The need for realtime BI
As business and technology have continued to change and improve, a new
phenomena is occurring. The two, originally opposite, ends of the business
intelligence, tactical and strategic decision-making, spectrum are moving
This is a merging of requirements, and need for more current information by
everyone. It is fueling, and enabling, the acceleration towards another key
milestone, that is called
closed-loop analytics. That means the results of data
warehousing, or business intelligence, analytics are being fed back to the
operational environment. Events can now be acted upon almost immediately,
avoiding costly problems rather than simply trying to minimize their impact. This
is a significant leap forward, and can now be realized with the capability to
support realtime.
The Internet is also playing a key role in this movement. For example, investors
now have access to information as never before. And, they can move their money
in and out of investments very quickly. If one company isn’t performing, they can
quickly and easily move their investment to another. Now everyone seems to
have the need for speed. They want results, and they want them now! They want
information, and they want it in
To meet the requirements and support this change in thinking and measurement,
companies are also moving towards realtime. Change, flexibility, and speed are
now key requirements for staying in business. Typically, tactical (or short-term)
decisions are made from the operational systems. However, that data usually
requires a good deal of analysis and time to provide benefit. And strategic (or
long-term) decisions are made from historical data - which may be contained in a
data warehouse. This process must change to support realtime.

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